Letterkenny Rovers won the Dick Duffy Memorial Donegal Youth League title for the third time in succession on Monday night at the Aura Centre.
Letterkenny Rovers 1
Keadue Rovers 1
It was a tetchy performance from Anthony Gorman’s team as they scraped the point they needed to secure the championships against the only team who could have pipped them - Keadue Rovers.
Letterkenny started the match impressively and went ahead on 12 minutes through a header from Kevin O’Donnell.
However, Keadue, who had to win the match to sneak the trophy, levelled through Hugh Moy and pushed Letterkenny to the full of their collar.
It was a nervy conclusion as Keadue knew exactly what they required and hurried forward, while Letterkenny were stuck between the two stools of trying to defend their point and pushing on for a winner.
Fanad United had defeated Letterkenny at the Aura Centre two weeks’ beforehand - it was the side from the Cathedral Town’s first league loss all season - to open the door for Ben Boyle’s Keadue.
Letterkenny set about their task well to begin with and went in front when Simon McGlynn crossed for O’Donnell to stoop and head under Danny Rodgers in the Keadue goal.
However, that lead was an uncomfortable one and Keadue went close when Gareth Doherty was dispossessed taking the ball out of defence and David Sweeney just couldn’t get enough contact on a cross from Ryan Greene.
Keadue got back on level terms on 28 minutes when a free from Adam Neely was headed home by Moy.
Neely then warmed the hands of Jason Quinn in the Letterkenny goal with a stinging free-kick that took two efforts to smother.
Three minutes into the second half, Adam McHugh thumped the Letterkenny crossbar from just outside the 18-yard box and Greene could only steer the rebound wide from in front of an open goal.
The whole thing happen so fast the Keadue striker probably only released seconds later just what a chance it was.
Keadue then squealed for a penalty when Sean Burns went down in the area after being challenged by Liam Blaney.
Letterkenny did create a couple of half chances but Ryan McCloskey couldn’t get his foot around a cross from McGlynn in what was the best of them.
Letterkenny hung on and were relieved to hear McGarrigle’s final whistle.
Letterkenny Rovers: Jason Quinn; Conor Coll, Liam Blaney, Luke Nelis, Noah Mailey; Simon McGlynn, Gareth Doherty, Dylan Sweeney, Kevin O’Donnell; Gavin McDaid (Marty Vance 79), Ryan McCluskey.
Keadue Rovers: Danny Rodgers; Cian Boyle, Hugh Moy, Matthew Ward, Darren Sweeney; Sean Burns, Adam McHugh, Adam Neely, Sean McMonagle; David Sweeney, Ryan Greene.
Referee: Marty McGarrigle.